THIS MILKY WAY
This Milky Way, our galaxy, contains
A massive hole of blackness at its core,
Where any photon striking it remains
In unreflected absence evermore,
While we perch on a speck upon a dot
Upon an arm that arcs to empty space,
Which preexisted all our prayers and thought
And long will linger after our spent race.
The ancients saw this sky-smear in the night,
And fancied milk of life, God’s guarantee.
Not we. We sense dark matter more than light,
And darker yet, increasing entropy.
The hopeless too are doomed to hope and wait,
And contemplate our origin and fate.
— Eric Chevlen
This poem appears in the Feb. 19 print issue of NR